Aside from the physical challenges over the past few months, the mental challenge was something I totally underestimated.
Here are some questions I ask myself before I have a carb catastrophe:
- Are you actually hungry? Take a minute and look at what your about to eat, are you hungry or are you just eating it for the sake of it??
- Maybe your are thirsty? Drink some water, wait 15 mins and then decide.
This for me is my main problem but I’m learning to avoid it as I now know it only makes things worse. Here are a few tips that helped me.
- Identify the emotion, whether you are bored, mad, anxious or even happy.
- I find when I’m bored I start to think of new healthy recipes that are going to help me rather than set me back. What interests you? Do something constructive.
- When I’m mad I channel all the negative energy into a workout whether it be at home or in the gym; even a run or a walk.
Anxiety and overeating
I used to self-medicate and my choice of drug was food. For me this was a vicious circle. I would never have said I suffered with anxiety but looking at things with a clearer head played a massive part in my life over the last few years. As my weight crept up I became very conscious about how people saw me. Over the years, smart comments or a certain look from someone would have me on edge. I would laugh it all off and maybe join in the slag to make it seem like I was ok, but all I would want to do was go home, go to my room and binge on the foods that I thought made me feel better. I was left with a feeling of disgust and guilt. These negative feelings led me to continue to use food to cope, thus the vicious cycle.
Addressing my feelings and taking responsibility for the way I was trying to deal with problems is the reason for my success. Once I acknowledged what I was doing and spoke about it I had to change things. I owned up to all the secret drive troughs and stashes of chocolate. I started to deal with my problems rather than eat them. I began to talk about how I was feeling and started to express myself in a way I thought I never could. I feel so much stronger now. For me getting a handle on my weight is something I thought I could never do. It just shows me that addressing the problem and taking action to resolve it is the first step, so before you join a gym or go out and do a big heathy shop. Ask yourself why….
Ok so the girls are calling over. Great, loads of munching and gossip. The old me would fly to the shop and pick up some jellies, crisps and dips, chocolate, cakes, biscuits you name it I bought it. Sitting with my friends picking away at all these sugary high fat foods enjoying their company and laughing our arses off is my idea of a great night. But did we need all that food??? It was never finished on the night which meant of course I had to finish them all off the following day or sometimes when the girls left… This ritual was almost weekly so it had to change. Now my girls’ nights are full of healthy snacks and fruit. They all welcomed the change as they were only eating the food I had placed in front of them. Don’t get me wrong, we are partial to an ole chocolate strawberry or a Curly Wurly but it’s little changes like this that make a massive difference.
Then there are just them times that sometimes no amount of chocolate bananas in the world can help you. And sometimes having the treat you want (in moderation) may actually be for the best. I have given myself little treats all the way over the last few months. Curly Wurlys are my best friend when I really need a quick chocolate fix. I just plan it in my day and allow for it. Sometimes I feel giving in can help you move on. We can’t be 100% all the time, and living is so important as if I felt I was begrudging myself of anything I would have given up a long time ago. It’s just about picking the better options.